Simply Haiku: A Quarterly Journal of Japanese Short Form Poetry
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Spring 2007, vol 5 no 1

RENKU

Kasen : Daisy State

       

Daisy State
the clear pebbles of the rain
across the landscape 1

eiko    

almost audible.... the sap
rising in the ash tree

sprite    

a distant truck
in sandy haze the child one
must be following

doreen    

a cup of lovely tea
taken with lots of scones

akiko    

a willow leaf
stirs the mirrored light
harvest moon

sprite    

our chimney cricket
begins his singing

eiko    

* * * *

     

out of the fog
same morning runner
this time not in shorts

doreen    

made in secret
her shell bracelet rustling

akiko    

skeins in the rough sea
my posahunco2 has to be
red-purple

sprite    

a drop too much
the first star looks blurred

eiko    

more so
with my eyes shut
granddad in the lounge

doreen    

"The Da Vinci Code shaking
the foundation of the Vatican"

akiko    

alpine avalanche
a team with rescue dogs
search for survivors

sprite    

that rose bush looks dead
under the frozen moon

doreen    

I see the gateway:
the fifth dimensional world
unfolds

eiko    

Melanie's Ivory Coast
kicks off on the sixteenth

sprite    

Ole! Ole!
each stadium transforms into
a people-flora

akiko    

high wind... the Thames
as if in a tutu

doreen    

* * * *

     

fluffed up hawthorn
a blackbird busily checks
every inch of ground

sprite    

workers smile picking tea-leaves
soft fragrance wafts

eiko    

singular spring passing
it has taken
the youth along

akiko    

old rattlesnake
cafeteria hushed

doreen    

noontime boardwalk3
the beads of sweat slither
down my forehead

sprite    

a handkerchief prince
rushing to rendezvous

eiko    

their glances meet:
the dawn mountain
totally pink

doreen    

the kings' names remain
on the wall of ruins

akiko    

Emperor squints
at the chrysanthemum
on the war shrine

eiko    

fewer children
play conkers now4

sprite    

is moon flying
our Pluto on his orbit
demoted or not

akiko    

a kiss for gran
while draughtproofing her window

doreen    

* * * *

     

...who ages well...
a Blur in blue shirt
or mighty Oasis

eiko    

'And the band played on' 5
no longer a best-seller

sprite    

the cold microscope
produces a kaleidoscopic
movement

akiko    

before a breakfast table
the serene horizon

eiko    

without thinking
I pick up
cherry blossoms

doreen    

girls linger
on the sun-warmed carpet

akiko    
     

Notes:
1 . The hokku is written in honkadoria to Mary Oliver's poem Wild Geese, the text of which can be found online via an internet search.
2 . Posahunco is a Spanish word meaning a wedding skirt, the threads coloured from drops of dye taken from special living sea-snails.
3 . Boardwalk: a walkway made of wooden boards; usually at seaside resorts.
4 . Conker is the name used in Britain, Ireland and some former British colonies for the nuts of the Common Horse-chestnut tree, when used in a game traditionally played by children, Conkers. To play, take it in turns to hit each other's conker using your own.
5 . And the band played on is the title of a book about the AIDS epidemic.

a . Honkadori has been an historically respected method in tanka, in which you base your tanka on a well-known tanka by a famous poet before you. It should not be confused with plagiarism but is considered, first, as homage to the earlier poet, second as a dialogue with him/her, and third as a means to make the present richer and fuller.

Participants:
Akiko Sakaguchi (Japan)
Eiko Yachimoto (Japan) - lead poet
Doreen King (Britain)
Sprite (France)

Composed March 25 to September 21, 2006
This poem is dedicated to mieko (1948 - 2006), a brave and beautiful sister of eiko yachimoto

 

Related articles in this issue of Simply Haiku:
Tomegaki : Daisy State



 

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